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Anomalocaris

The Origins of Religion

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Dhurfjooydig
3 minutes ago, back to earth said:

Similar to what happened with the Australian Aboriginals .   They didnt have a religion and didnt know what it was when asked .  White people, in their ignorant observations and classifications of them also considered that they had no religion as they observed they had no religious practices .   Today  the term     Indigenous spirituality, traditions   or culture is the term used . 

The same with concepts of land ownership .   Both these ( and some others , like their diversity )  have changed over time, the land issue especially ,  to  be able to  move through the new 'political' world .     ( Eg,  if one states they dont 'own ' the land then they will probably lose it forever . ) 

 

Shall we open the smelly fish on the   "  Hindu religion  "   ?     NO such thing , another western political invention ( later supported by the Indian Nationalist Party ) .     Before the British invasion of India  there was no 'Hinduism ' . 

(but I have already argued this with Walker , he chose to ignore it  )        

 

http://www.oxfordscholarship.com/view/10.1093/0195166558.001.0001/acprof-9780195166552

ABSTRACT

Is “Hinduism” a legitimate term for the widely varying religious practices of India that are commonly called by that name? The appearance of “religion” as a category comprising a set of practices and beliefs allegedly found in every culture dates from the modern period, emerging as Europe expanded trade abroad and established its first colonial relations in the 17th and 18th centuries. Hinduism emerged in the encounter between modernity’s greatest colonial power, Great Britain, and the jewel of her imperial crown, India. Around the turn of the 19th century, officials of the British colonial state and Christian missionaries helped cement the idea that regional and sectarian traditions in India possessed a sufficient coherence to be construed as a single, systematic religion. This encounter was deeply shaded by the articulation and development of the concept of “religion”, and it produced the now common idea that Hinduism is a unified religion. 

And before Western religious scholars invented it in the mid 1800s, what is now known as 'Buddhism' didn't exist. 

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back to earth

Dont tell walker   ..... he is a Christobuddhisindu  !   

 

I just realised something   , he is a pigeon holer ... he could not  even understand why I objected to him putting people in little boxes and categories of his own device . 

This is just what the colonials did  , created boxes   invented modern religion   concepts, labeled those  religion boxes and herded diverse peoples into them and told them they now had 'religion' .   So no wonder he is pushing the agenda he is  (if it just isnt out of the usual ignorance on the subject ) 

I also read today  a HIndu , who believes there is a HIndu religion also complained that is NOT a religion ... " HInduism is not a religion, its a way of life ! "   he said .

No word in old Judaism for religion either , the closest translates is 'law' . 

Edited by back to earth
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Mr Walker
2 hours ago, No Solid Ground said:

Here's an example of how religion was used as a geopolitical tool to colonize minds and countries:

Jason Josephson writes in The Invention of Religion in Japan: “Throughout its long history, Japan had no concept for ‘religion’. There was no corresponding Japanese word, nor anything that came close to its meaning until the 1850s when America forced the Japanese to sign treaties demanding, among other things, freedom of religion” (Josephson 2012). This freedom of religion clause was lobbied for inclusion by Western Christian leaders, who eyed Japan as virgin territory for Christian mind share. To comply, Japan was forced by threat of economic / military might to create an official state-defined category for religion. Shendao (Shinto)—the way, path, law (dao) of the celestial entities (shen)—was officially categorized as a science. All other variations of the ancient story, thirty-six of them named in the scholarly documents of the time, became newly classified as religion or as superstition to satisfy treaty demands. The power of using religion as a geopolitical tool is apparent in the sad fact that just a hundred years later or so, Shinto became understood around the world as a 'religion' and 'spiritual path' in spite of Japan's Shinto leaders having rejected the classification. 

This evident marriage of 1. the concept of supernatural religion (as refined / codified by Thomas Aquinas in the 13th century), 2. economic power, and 3. military might, was a powerful Christian dominated geopolitical force, starting in the 13th century, that drove the crusades and the inquisitions ... and that later wreaked geopolitical havoc as European countries colonized and committed genocide around the world in the name of 'religion' (and rich plunder) for the next 400 years. Christianity, the manufacturers of this modern concept of religion / geopolitical tool has centuries of blood on its hands. A strong argument can be made that this marriage of Christian 'religious' perception management and capitalism backed up by military might is still the dominant geopolitical force in the world. Colonization of minds (the newly invented concept of 'religion' as a perception management too) and countries (through military / economic force) ... was a central goal behind the invention / codification of religion in the 13th century, a time when a common perception of the separation of religious power and political power had yet to be implemented.

 

 Poor old jason is simply wrong ( unless again you chose to redefine what  you mean by religion, as he does)

Japan had many religions. Shinto and buddhism have been the main religions since about the 6th century. Confucianism is also common..There are remnants of the ainu animism which is probably the oldest religion in japan  We hae already discussed tha t just because no word for something exists does not mean that the concept and reality do not exist   Religion existed and i am sure the japanese referred to it using some word or phrase.

Are you seriously arguing, for example that buddhism, as practiced in japan for 14 centuries,  is not a religion?  If you practice buddhism, have a buddhist shrine in your house, and observe other rituals of buddhism, then  you have a religion, even if you don't think of it as such    So shintoism was  considered a science? .  .  so was christianity,  and still is by some fundamentalists. It does not  make either so.

You don't suppose for one minute that america, the main instigator of opening up japan, honestly wanted FREEDOM of religion because it  was enshrined in its own constitution   This concept meant there would not BE one state operated religion which outlawed all other faiths, as catholicism had become prior to the settlement of america. 

I am sorry but your worldview is so radical /fanatical and unrealistic that it is like arguing with a christian or muslin fundamentalist.  You redefine and see every thin in terms of your poisoned mind  You twist real history into some  fantastical creation of your own fervid imagination. 

i remain interested  in where you got this concept from, and the geopolitical movement which obviously spawned it, apparently  in an attempt   to re educate the young into a new and antagonist attitude towards christianity.  It reminds me a lot of animal farm. and 1984 in its attempts to redefine language to fit a new political structure  defined by those who would profit from that structure.  

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Mr Walker
1 hour ago, No Solid Ground said:

And before Western religious scholars invented it in the mid 1800s, what is now known as 'Buddhism' didn't exist. 

Oh tell  that to all the buddhists who practiced a codified belief system, with rituals, and based on common belief structures for a couple of millennia

  This is classic, and what i mean about an incredible attempt to redefine terminology  Of course buddhism existed if there were buddhists.  Our modern concpet of buddhism the very name MIGHT not have existed , yet as long as there have been buddhists there has been the reality of buddhism.  What you are arguing is like this

There  were no native australians before  the 15th century, because the name terra australis did not exist then.  There were no people living in england before the angles  came because the name angle land did not exist  Christianity constructed the concept of worship and religion, thus worship and religion did not exist before christianity

 

  Well they did, even if the form or name might have been different  Humans don't and can't change in the way this theory proposes.  Christians actually are worshipping and thinking exactly how cromagnons, neandertals,  ancient greeks, romans chinese   mongols mesoamericans etc have   worshipped   totally independent of christianity.  Human brains have not changed, thus human cognitive processes have not changed.  Only form and function changes, in response to changing socio economic realities and imperatives. 

When you sacrifice someone to a god you are WORSHIPPING that god and you have a religious belief which underpins why you sacrifice.  

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Podo
11 hours ago, No Solid Ground said:

And before Western religious scholars invented it in the mid 1800s, what is now known as 'Buddhism' didn't exist. 

Okay, what? People have been following the teachings of Gautama Buddha since somewhere between 400 and 800 BCE, in ancient India. Do...do you deny this? Because there are mountains of buddhist records from the ancient times. Or are you just saying that the monolithic institution of Buddhism as an entity hasn't existed since the 1800s? The latter I can understand, since even in Mandarin and Japanese (I speak both), there aren't really terms for "buddhist," the categorical term being a mostly western invention.

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GoldenWolf

Never mind

Edited by Mystic Crusader
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Podo
4 minutes ago, Mystic Crusader said:

Never mind

;)

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back to earth
18 hours ago, Mr Walker said:

 Poor old jason is simply wrong ( unless again you chose to redefine what  you mean by religion, as he does)

Poor old Walker is simply wrong   :) 

See ... anyone can merely state   anything  .    So many of your posts start this way .....       with a chuckle added to cement whatever issue it is you have ?      

18 hours ago, Mr Walker said:

Japan had many religions. Shinto and buddhism have been the main religions since about the 6th century. Confucianism is also common..There are remnants of the ainu animism which is probably the oldest religion in japan  We hae already discussed tha t just because no word for something exists does not mean that the concept and reality do not exist   Religion existed and i am sure the japanese referred to it using some word or phrase.

Your 'surety' means little to us .

18 hours ago, Mr Walker said:

Are you seriously arguing, for example that buddhism, as practiced in japan for 14 centuries,  is not a religion?  If you practice buddhism, have a buddhist shrine in your house, and observe other rituals of buddhism, then  you have a religion, even if you don't think of it as such    So shintoism was  considered a science? .  .  so was christianity,  and still is by some fundamentalists. It does not  make either so.

You don't suppose for one minute that america, the main instigator of opening up japan, honestly wanted FREEDOM of religion because it  was enshrined in its own constitution   This concept meant there would not BE one state operated religion which outlawed all other faiths, as catholicism had become prior to the settlement of america. 

Now you are mixing up the times from when there was no separation  to when there was and projecting back from the latter to the earlier .     You are soooo confused about the basic issue here  ... cant see the forest for the trees .  And is NOT for lack of patient  and polite explanation to you  ... backed up with academic articles  .... or isnt Oxford Scholarship Online  good enough for you Walker ?

 

About

Access an online library of over 13,000 outstanding academic books from Oxford University Press

Oxford Scholarship Online (OSO) is a vast and rapidly-expanding online library, providing easy access to thousands of books across the world-renowned scholarly list of Oxford University Press. Spanning subjects across the humanities, social sciences, science, medicine, and law, OSO is an essential research resource for student, scholar, and academic alike, no matter what their subject specialty. Launched in 2003 with four subject modules, Oxford Scholarship Online is now available in the below 20 subject areas:

http://www.oxfordscholarship.com/page/about-oso/about;jsessionid=9EE0FDCB8B62FC83419876422A991A3C

try educating yourself ;  http://www.oxfordscholarship.com/page/about-oso/about;jsessionid=9EE0FDCB8B62FC83419876422A991A3C

18 hours ago, Mr Walker said:

I am sorry but your worldview is so radical /fanatical and unrealistic that it is like arguing with a christian or muslin fundamentalist.  You redefine and see every thin in terms of your poisoned mind  You twist real history into some  fantastical creation of your own fervid imagination. 

Oxford Scholarship Online Walker ... thats who you are calling these names .

What weak tactics ! 

18 hours ago, Mr Walker said:

i remain interested  in where you got this concept from,

TRy Oxford Scholarship online    http://www.oxfordscholarship.com/page/about-oso/about;jsessionid=9EE0FDCB8B62FC83419876422A991A3C

ohhh ... I see you put me on ignore again as ....

 

Related image

18 hours ago, Mr Walker said:

 

 and the geopolitical movement which obviously spawned it, apparently  in an attempt   to re educate the young into a new and antagonist attitude towards christianity.  It reminds me a lot of animal farm. and 1984 in its attempts to redefine language to fit a new political structure  defined by those who would profit from that structure.  

Cut the fiction and read something factual for a change . 

http://www.oxfordscholarship.com/view/10.1093/0195166558.001.0001/acprof-9780195166552http://www.oxfordscholarship.com/page/about-oso/about;jsessionid=9EE0FDCB8B62FC83419876422A991A3C

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Stubbly_Dooright
9 hours ago, back to earth said:
Quote

You don't suppose for one minute that america, the main instigator of opening up japan, honestly wanted FREEDOM of religion because it  was enshrined in its own constitution   This concept meant there would not BE one state operated religion which outlawed all other faiths, as catholicism had become prior to the settlement of america. 

Now you are mixing up the times from when there was no separation  to when there was and projecting back from the latter to the earlier .     You are soooo confused about the basic issue here  ... cant see the forest for the trees .  And is NOT for lack of patient  and polite explanation to you  ... backed up with academic articles  .... or isnt Oxford Scholarship Online  good enough for you Walker ?

Plus, by that definition, (that you're arguing very well against BTE ;) ) America would then drive itself into a corner of what it's suppose to do, after defining that it doesn't have one particular religion to rule against all the others. Nothing mentioning then who follows what, if you cannot follow a particular one, where does one go from there? If you can't one particular religion to outlaw the rest, then you can have no religion, to show it doesn't matter if others privately have their's. So, in essence, it shouldn't matter what religion or none, that one has, it has no business mixing in political matters. 

Yes, BTE, the separation is there to make it easier to live on, without having to get harassed about how you're suppose to live by something that has no definite proof. I think, it was considered even for the Atheists that being punished by what belief you don't have to have, is wrong because of the ethical understanding that is still cruel treatment, based on something you can't prove. 

 

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Mr Walker
On 2017-5-18 at 10:37 PM, Stubbly_Dooright said:

Plus, by that definition, (that you're arguing very well against BTE ;) ) America would then drive itself into a corner of what it's suppose to do, after defining that it doesn't have one particular religion to rule against all the others. Nothing mentioning then who follows what, if you cannot follow a particular one, where does one go from there? If you can't one particular religion to outlaw the rest, then you can have no religion, to show it doesn't matter if others privately have their's. So, in essence, it shouldn't matter what religion or none, that one has, it has no business mixing in political matters. 

Yes, BTE, the separation is there to make it easier to live on, without having to get harassed about how you're suppose to live by something that has no definite proof. I think, it was considered even for the Atheists that being punished by what belief you don't have to have, is wrong because of the ethical understanding that is still cruel treatment, based on something you can't prove. 

 

The constitutional separation of state in america existed well before the opening up of japan  The first amendment on religious separation came into effect in 1791. It was one of the founding principles of america that there should NEVER be a state religion but instead freedom of religion for all, with no interference from the state either by founding/supporting, or opposing, ANY religion. .  

The "establishment of religion" clause of the First Amendment means at least this: Neither a state nor the Federal Government can set up a church. Neither can pass laws which aid one religion, aid all religions, or prefer one religion to another . . . in the words of Jefferson, the [First Amendment] clause against establishment of religion by law was intended to erect 'a wall of separation between church and State' . . . That wall must be kept high and impregnable. We could not approve the slightest breach.[11]

 

The opening up of japan under commodore Perry  came 60 years LATER  in the early 1850s

In influencing the constitution of japan (as indeed it later influenced the australian constitution, which has almost  identical wording) America argued strongly for separation of state and church; ie that state would maintain a hands off policy on religion, unlike the european systems where,  for example, even today, the queen of england is BOTH head of the church and head of state and the  church of england religion IS a state religion. 

And what BTE fails to point out is ta the source is a book published by oxford scholarship online. It is one of over 13000 books made available. .

I actually checked the book and author   While i could only access the precis it doesnt say quite what is being argued here. And it is the theory of one writer, not even an official or accepted academic pov. 

Ps i agree with you on the separation of state in america.

it was never intended to protect the rights of the non religious but in its wording it does so, and that is a good thing.   It was never meant to be freedom FROM religion but freedom OF religion including freedom for  the non religious

However balance needs to be maintained. We have the same section in our constitution yet we can still have prayers and religious services of any denomination in govt schools, there are multi faith chaplains paid for by govt in most govt schools  and prayers are still said in parliament.

 Australia has gone a bit the other way despite the same wording in our constitution, , enshrining freedom of all religions and equality for all. 

Rather than removing religion from the public sphere it embraces all religions and the non religious.  This is made easier because fundamentalism and creationism is so much less prevalent in australia.

Thus a creationist can come into a school for a religious meeting and talk to interested students (as can any one, of any belief)  but creationism/intelligent design is banned from any govt school curriculum

 Thus gideons can come in and give bibles to students but only those who want one  This is because our govt/courts has interpreted the constitution to mean it cannot interfere with religious belief and expression in public institutions either for or against.  A child  (or indeed a teacher) cannot be discriminated against in a government  school  for wearing a religious icon or clothing as this would break laws on religious freedom and discrimination in australia. To me this is a greater freedom than banning the wearing of any or all religious symbols which mean so much to some peole.   Allowing prayers for all faiths in schools (and the right to not pray to anything)  is a greater freedom than denying it  for all.  

Edited by Mr Walker

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back to earth
2 hours ago, Mr Walker said:

 

And what BTE fails to point out is ta the source is a book published by oxford scholarship online.

Wrong yet again ,  BTE clearly pointed that out   .... very clearly .  IT looks like you are   LYING AGAIN   Walker .

Quote

 

It is one of over 13000 books made available. .

So .     Listen up Walker .... how many books to you suppose  any University publishing house has  made available . 

If you didnt know , part of a University's  reason to exist  is to make knowledge available .  :rolleyes:

Quote

I actually checked the book and author   While i could only access the precis it doesnt say quite what is being argued here. And it is the theory of one writer, not even an official or accepted academic pov. 

yes, it is a theory of one writer in that article as one writer wrote it  ( my God , can this get even more stupid ! ? ) 

 

But the theory itself is not from one writer . I just used one quote   :D 

Do you want a list of them ? 

Then it would be ;  'Oh its just those 7 ." 

If you had not lost your memory, someone  else was giving you the 'theory' here .... and then there was  me ... so thats three so far .

Shall we count the academics that first put this observation ( 'theory' )  up in the first place  ... that you now deny exists ? 

If I put up all that info again (as I did last time and you stopped arguing and ran off instead , only to return to this rubbish a year later ! )    will you concede it  IS an academic idea   and not just  BTE  ( when you try to argue with him )  and not just that one author  ) when you try to discredit them by saying its just one person ) ,  not just NSG  ( when you dispute with  him )   ? 

Well ......    will you ?   Shall I put it up here and watch more of your silly excuses double talk bad memory juggling moving goal posts  or ... as we have come to say here  .....  ...  more   'Walkering'   ??? 

( I will ya know, I will go into my file and post it all again - I dont have to go back a year and try and find it here (another of your ploys that failed ) 

Edited by back to earth
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Mr Walker
5 hours ago, back to earth said:

Wrong yet again ,  BTE clearly pointed that out   .... very clearly .  IT looks like you are   LYING AGAIN   Walker .

So .     Listen up Walker .... how many books to you suppose  any University publishing house has  made available . 

If you didnt know , part of a University's  reason to exist  is to make knowledge available .  :rolleyes:

yes, it is a theory of one writer in that article as one writer wrote it  ( my God , can this get even more stupid ! ? ) 

 

But the theory itself is not from one writer . I just used one quote   :D 

Do you want a list of them ? 

Then it would be ;  'Oh its just those 7 ." 

If you had not lost your memory, someone  else was giving you the 'theory' here .... and then there was  me ... so thats three so far .

Shall we count the academics that first put this observation ( 'theory' )  up in the first place  ... that you now deny exists ? 

If I put up all that info again (as I did last time and you stopped arguing and ran off instead , only to return to this rubbish a year later ! )    will you concede it  IS an academic idea   and not just  BTE  ( when you try to argue with him )  and not just that one author  ) when you try to discredit them by saying its just one person ) ,  not just NSG  ( when you dispute with  him )   ? 

Well ......    will you ?   Shall I put it up here and watch more of your silly excuses double talk bad memory juggling moving goal posts  or ... as we have come to say here  .....  ...  more   'Walkering'   ??? 

( I will ya know, I will go into my file and post it all again - I dont have to go back a year and try and find it here (another of your ploys that failed ) 

 What you failed to point out was th this is not a book written by  the university or authorised by the university but simply one of many books  published by the university publishing house  You were arguing this gave it academic kudos or validation anf thus ta the theory is somehow endorsed by the university or the  academics of the university. Neither is true.  

I never denied the theory existed. I said, correctly that it is non mainstream  and is quite difficult even to find, in general google searches until you already know something about it

  It simply defies all that is known about religion and worship and attempts to redefine the very terms to justify its hypothesis

This is why apologists for it have to explain how confronting and controversial it is and how people find i hard to accept because it flies in the face of all previous academic understanding  Really ? No it is simply  not accepted by almost ALL academia. because it doesn't fit the established knowledge and understandings about the nature of religious belief and religions and worship  It doesn't match the nature of belief in primitive people of today and it doesn't match the writings of the sumerians, babylonians, egyptians, chinese  or ANY early recorded writings about human belief religion and worship.

7 sources compared with 7 million or more academic  pieces on ealry religions belief and worship  

Read just ONE on the popul vuh  a maya texts describing pre european mayan religion and worship.

Then try and tell me that before christianity and the middle ages humans had no religions, and did not worship  

 It would be hilarious if some people didnt get sucked in by such rubbish,  and use it to justify a belief that somehow christianity was a backward step in the evolution of human belief systems,  rather than just another forward step along the evolutionary path of human belief, faith, religiosity, and worship. 

http://www.ancient.eu/Maya_Religion/

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Dhurfjooydig
8 hours ago, Mr Walker said:

... that somehow christianity was a backward step in the evolution of human belief systems,  rather than just another forward step along the evolutionary path of human belief, faith, religiosity, and worship. 

Christianity purposefully cultivates a mind state distorted by trained narcissism, pathological alienation, and  supernatural abstraction, which creates delusional and confused  patterns of thought in modern people that have had and, more than ever, are having a destructive effect on the natural world, human society, and health and wellbeing. As Lynn White writes in The Historical Roots of our Ecological Crisis (White 1967): “The emphasis … on a transcendence over nature in the quest of a personal salvation and otherworldy reward, a turning away from the world, and the dominion of humans over nature has led to a devaluing of the natural world and a subsequent destruction of its resources for utilitarian ends.”

This strategically cultivated mind state (in the interest of power and profit by religious institutions) has conditioned how we think in modern society, whether we are religious or not, and whether we are scientifically knowledgeable or not. It deeply and unconsciously permeates all of Western and Westernized thought. Modern people have been religiously conditioned since the 12-13th century  to regard ourselves as existing somehow separate from the natural world, which is regarded as an unruly (even 'evil') entity that exists for us to control and exploit. Earth is regarded as a static pile of resources for us to consume. This pattern of thought, and the pursuit of a 'supernatural' (above and beyond the laws of nature) existence after death, have also conditioned modern people to value a psychotic ideation of a fairy tale 'heaven' over the thin fragile layer of life here in Earth that humanity and all living beings depend on for survival and sustenance, resulting in a radically individualistic way of life (micromanaged by the ruling class) that necessarily causes discontentment, disease, conflict, and endangerment.

This 'religious' way of thinking, with its explicit and implicit rejection of the natural world, is the foundation of unrestrained materialism, scientific reductionism, irresponsible and destructive industrialism, and a rampant consumerism that are wreaking havoc by destroying the ecosystem, destabilizing society, negatively impacting our health and wellbeing, and narrowing the human species' chance of survival. This way of thinking and perceiving is the direct result of the modern invention of the concept of supernatural religion, and has led to the wholesale destruction of the ecosystem which has in turn led to the current horrifying reality that 150k species are going extinct annually and accelerating ... 2/3 of all species are projected to die off by the end of the century ... while religious people pray to a hallucination for miracles and a place in 'heaven'.

The legacy of this modern invention of the concept of supernatural religion is an abject degradation of humanity and perhaps even its extinction, in stark contrast to our premodern ancestors' cultivated understanding of, relationship with, protection of, and (ritually preserved) way of living in balance with, the patterns and processes of the natural world and the celestial mechanics that drive it.

"that somehow christianity was a backward step in the evolution of human belief systems" ... is a colossal understatement in view of the religious madness it has cultivated and benefitted richly by.

 “Modern society is in an extreme, pathological state of rupture from the reality of the natural world, as is indicated on a daily basis by the ecological crisis. There is, moreover, little public recognition that this crisis is indeed a psychological one.”  

— Andy Fisher

Edited by No Solid Ground

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Mr Walker
4 hours ago, No Solid Ground said:

Christianity purposefully cultivates a mind state distorted by trained narcissism, pathological alienation, and  supernatural abstraction, which creates delusional and confused  patterns of thought in modern people that have had and, more than ever, are having a destructive effect on the natural world, human society, and health and wellbeing. As Lynn White writes in The Historical Roots of our Ecological Crisis (White 1967): “The emphasis … on a transcendence over nature in the quest of a personal salvation and otherworldy reward, a turning away from the world, and the dominion of humans over nature has led to a devaluing of the natural world and a subsequent destruction of its resources for utilitarian ends.”

This strategically cultivated mind state (in the interest of power and profit by religious institutions) has conditioned how we think in modern society, whether we are religious or not, and whether we are scientifically knowledgeable or not. It deeply and unconsciously permeates all of Western and Westernized thought. Modern people have been religiously conditioned since the 12-13th century  to regard ourselves as existing somehow separate from the natural world, which is regarded as an unruly (even 'evil') entity that exists for us to control and exploit. Earth is regarded as a static pile of resources for us to consume. This pattern of thought, and the pursuit of a 'supernatural' (above and beyond the laws of nature) existence after death, have also conditioned modern people to value a psychotic ideation of a fairy tale 'heaven' over the thin fragile layer of life here in Earth that humanity and all living beings depend on for survival and sustenance, resulting in a radically individualistic way of life (micromanaged by the ruling class) that necessarily causes discontentment, disease, conflict, and endangerment.

This 'religious' way of thinking, with its explicit and implicit rejection of the natural world, is the foundation of unrestrained materialism, scientific reductionism, irresponsible and destructive industrialism, and a rampant consumerism that are wreaking havoc by destroying the ecosystem, destabilizing society, negatively impacting our health and wellbeing, and narrowing the human species' chance of survival. This way of thinking and perceiving is the direct result of the modern invention of the concept of supernatural religion, and has led to the wholesale destruction of the ecosystem which has in turn led to the current horrifying reality that 150k species are going extinct annually and accelerating ... 2/3 of all species are projected to die off by the end of the century ... while religious people pray to a hallucination for miracles and a place in 'heaven'.

The legacy of this modern invention of the concept of supernatural religion is an abject degradation of humanity and perhaps even its extinction, in stark contrast to our premodern ancestors' cultivated understanding of, relationship with, protection of, and (ritually preserved) way of living in balance with, the patterns and processes of the natural world and the celestial mechanics that drive it.

"that somehow christianity was a backward step in the evolution of human belief systems" ... is a colossal understatement in view of the religious madness it has cultivated and benefitted richly by.

 “Modern society is in an extreme, pathological state of rupture from the reality of the natural world, as is indicated on a daily basis by the ecological crisis. There is, moreover, little public recognition that this crisis is indeed a psychological one.”  

— Andy Fisher

Thank you This is an honest presentation of your world view. which demonstrates to me. at least. why you (and perhaps others) construct and hold onto such a strange belief about religion.

it is an attempt to place the christian religion in a false and antagonistic  position in the evolution of religious history in humanity .

As i said, it is a sort of new age/ modernist attempt to revise both history but more significantly the actual nature od human belief and the cognitive processes by which humans form spiritual beliefs and hence religions.  it demonstrates a total ignorance about the nature of human belief and religious formation  and then attributes alse motivations t the purpose of religion (notably christianity)  

If you believe the stuff i have bolded then of course you have no choice but to see religion as you do.

If you cant see that this position is itself a belief construct, and a very negative one, based on false facts,  then it might even seem reasonable or logical.

People stopped believing in the spirits of nature NOT because the christian church told them to but because the y became separated from nature and their dependence on it  as their technology (primarily animal husbandry and agriculture) freed them from physical dependence on such a connection The more control a people has over nature the less need the y have to worship it And so religious beliefs transcend to other things they don't understand or have control over like death and social forms laws and  organization Religion begins to revolve around organising life in towns rather than hunting clans 

They stopped caring about nature because farming and agriculture put the in conflict with the forces of nature rather than the harmony required by hunting and gathering (the story of genesis is an allegorical tale of this transition and the gains and losses such a transition means) Environment shapes the form of inherent human beliefs . It is not a control mechanism but an evolutionary function to allow humans to better understand and cope with the environment in which they live 

One cannot argue with the sort of fanaticism which generates a statement like your opening paragraph

It is a lie based on both false premises and on false understandings of the psychological make up and psychological needs of human beings.  Humans believe because they need to believe and because belief is good for them 

They worship because they need to worship and the y construct deities, spirits, gods, etc because this fulfils needs to understand the nature of self and environment The form of a belief is sculpted or shaped by the scientific knowledge and  the nature of the socio economic and even political system a person lives in SO a hunter gatherer will shape one religious form, an early agrarian another and a technological civilization a third.

  The spread of christianity is down to two things First is its placement in the roman empire and later in european colonisers. BUT it exists as a dominant religion only because it meets the basic needs of modern humans

 To me the pov outlined in your post presents a  fake academic veneer to a position very similar to mystic crusaders more honest and basic total antipathy to christianity

Of course people tend to be conditioned by the social form the y live in but living in a christian form is no different to living on the mongolian plains or in mesoamerican society Other Forces also shape our conditioning and i can assure you that  a modern christian can also be a strong environmental advocate, a vegetarian  live sustainably and see themselves as responsible for sustaining and maintaining the world  . Christianity continues to evolve The attitudes of capitalist materialist europe and america from the 17 to 20th centuries which permeated christianity  are being replaced by a more environmentally conscious form of christianity. one where caring for peole and the planet becomes part of the role of stewardship and responsibility Colonialism (and racism)  is gone replaced with a universalism of faith and equality of humanity

The battle for souls has been replaced by a battle for humanity on earth  And for many modern christians the battle is to live a good life and hence create heaven on earth rather than the dubious potential of one in an afterlife  

Maybe its different in some parts of fundamentalist america or the darkest bastions of unreformed catholicism but from my experience with, and studies of, christianity it has been evolving its social form for at least 60 years and probably more. Few christians remain creationists and few have a strong belief in an afterlife  For modern believers christianity tells them how to live with others and how to care for the planet. in a sustainable and equal way.  It still offers hope and comfort and a social support and cohesion but it is not (and probably never was )actually the beast of domination you present it as  It was shaped by the nature and understandings of its time and always responded to the understandings but also fears and hopes of the people . it could be used by people who sought power but only because it HAD its own power in the hearts and minds of ordinary humans it was never constructed or intended as a form of enslavement or control, but as one of liberation. 

Ps if you  read the bible you will see it is in total opposition to the modern trend to; over consumption, waste,,  materialism and greed,  imperialism, capitalism etc. which grew as modern western technology combined with capitali created an over supply of goods and needed to market a continuous flow of products.  

A christian does not need much in the way of material possessions, if their needs are met on a spiritual level,  and so is actually a danger to capitalism and  unsustainable growth  (this is also true for any believers  of any religion who get their needs met by their spiritual beliefs.) 

Materialism , and the need for an ever growing but unsustainable economy and population, are in total opposition to the bible's core messages of love, charity, compassion, stewardship, concern for others, the brotherhood of man etc. It provides the spiritual alternative to materialism, and offers an alternative sustainable, low impact way of living. 

Ps the invention the modern plow in the agrarian revolution, with its abilty to be harnessed to an animal, was far more significant in the destruction of the earths naturla environment than christianity ever could be.

  Dryads disappeared not because of christian opposition to them, but because men could grow more, live better, and even begin to accumulate wealth, by clearing the woods where the dryads lived   :) And so human values began the transition from spiritual to material. 

The rapid growth of technology during and after the industrial revolution only hastened this transition. It had nothing  (or a t least very little)  to do with christianity. 

Finally, you need to understand that this  knowledge brings benefits, but comes at a price. We lost the dryads and our connection to nature.(and to our god (s))  but we have eliminated most diseases, and are working on things like  eliminating cancer. Humans live longer, are healthier, and in less pain, than ever in human history  Many of us never need feel hunger or cold.  Human knowldge and science has brought great benefits, albeit at great environmental costs.

Religion now offers the hope of establishing a new balance between technological knowledge and spiritual wisdom, so our technologies can be harnessed to creating a paradise on earth. (The message, for example, of Avatar ) 

Edited by Mr Walker

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Dhurfjooydig
2 hours ago, Mr Walker said:

The spread of christianity ... exists as a dominant religion only because it meets the basic needs of modern humans

This conveniently overlooks the millions of people who were tortured, imprisoned, and murdered by Christianity because they didn't believe what was demanded of them ... and the millions of people who were forced to convert and disavow their own culture's narratives or else suffer social ostracism / economic deprivation.  

Christianity exists as a dominant religion because of its history of violence / aggression / colonization / genocide ... and its profitable alignment with the ruling class who enforced Christianity's dominance ... and its infiltration of education systems for the purpose of mass forced indoctrination for hundreds of years. 

Edited by No Solid Ground
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Mr Walker
1 hour ago, No Solid Ground said:

This conveniently overlooks the millions of people who were tortured, imprisoned, and murdered by Christianity because they didn't believe what was demanded of them ... and the millions of people who were forced to convert and disavow their own culture's narratives or else suffer social ostracism / economic deprivation.  

Christianity exists as a dominant religion because of its history of violence / aggression / colonization / genocide ... and its profitable alignment with the ruling class who enforced Christianity's dominance ... and its infiltration of education systems for the purpose of mass forced indoctrination for hundreds of years. 

It doesn't overlook it,

Whenever races, cultures, or religions clash, there is violence and strife  The stronger (usually economically and militarily but sometimes ideologically(  prevails. Polynesian/melanesian  tribes and clans fought,  sometimes horrendously, so did american indigenous groups before white arrival,  so did australian clans and  moieties. The difference lay in roman and european technical domination  which allowed absolute and relatively easy conquests on a massive scale.  

Belief and faith gives back more to individuals and to societies than it costs. Otherwise it would become unsustainable (religions always fail when they are no longer relevant to the people n a society  or a more relevant belief system competes with them)  

The contrary view, historically to balance  yours is this  (and this is but one example)

 Catholic christianity unified the disparate forces of europe at the time of mongol invasion.

Without the central cohesion provided by the one religion, the different kingdoms duchies etc which made up europe at the time would not have withstood the invasions for as long as they did, and europe would have been (as china was) a province of the mongols Likewise christianity is probably critical,  along with revisions in the defence strategies of european states to a more local and dispersed defence,  in repelling the norse invasions  and settlements

Whatever life might have been like under medieval christianity it would have been 100 times more barbaric under the mongol or norse religions. . In reality there were few forced conversions early on except in the way all humans then were coerced.

When your leader or ruler converted you also did as you had no freedom of action in ANY thing from marriage to occupation.  

There were terrible excesses for a short period of history as the mainstream catholic church killed off all those they saw as heretics  Again this has to be balanced with a realistic understanding of life and people at the time  and the benefits which also accrued  to europe. This wasnt really about domination pf people as much as a real and powerful belief that it was better to die in this world to save your soul in the next immortal one

 Most inquisitors for example truly believed the y were saving peole from eternal damnation  rather than establishing dominance.

  Colonisation is a different thing

Religion, especially in non catholic countries, was only an adjunct to exploration and colonisation Trade, wealth, power, land, etc were the main drivers of european  exploration and settlement.   Because by then the church and sate in catholic europe were so tied together, the church rode on the backs of explorers and entrepreneurs.   Certainly christianity changed the face of the world forever and reshaped the lives of many indigenous peoples  This was inevitable and in part the conflict between primitive and sophisticated societies still continues    But it also changed the technological levels and attitudes of peole all around the world You cannot maintain a animist belief system for example alongside a culture able to manufacture and mass produce material things  Animism for example requires an underlying connection to the land, through culture, to survive .

 It wasn't religion which changed indigenous peoples lives for ever, it was materialism and technologies.  Indigenous peole tended to embrace christianity because the y thought it was a part of the power and strength of their conquerors and in part they were right  The advanced military and technological strength of europe would not have been possible if peole still worshiped the spirits of the earth sky and air.  There were also many practices unacceptable to us in modern times which were embraced by indigenous peoples from cannibalism to human sacrifice  

You are a real conspiracy theorist you realise  Religion simply is not as you believe it to be and in the main never has been  Christianity is dominant today BECAUSE it was the religion of the technologically dominant societies in two periods The roman empire and expansionist europe.  it WAS the religion of those two groups because it was the best socio economic  fit for such societies and because they required one dominant unifying force to become powerful empires unifying many groups of peole across europe and the world  rather than the diverse or pantheistic religions of the ancient civilizations.

It remains dominant today because it remains the best cultural fit for western thinking people (and that includes many colonised people) 

Look a tit this way if mithraism had been a better fit for ancient romans than christianity then mithraism would be the dominant religion of today spread by rome and european colonisation across the world.  But this would be impossible because it simply does not contain the belief forms required to make sense in a modern society and technologically advanced  people can't connect in a meaningful way with it.  Christianity (and most other modern religions do, and that is why the y have survived and prospered across the globe while ealry local religions have either died out or remain as remnant religions among small groups. 

Edited by Mr Walker

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Dhurfjooydig
34 minutes ago, Mr Walker said:

It remains dominant today because it remains the best cultural fit for western thinking people (and that includes many colonised people) 

 It remains dominant today because it is a perfect match for the perpetuation of a radical capitalist / consumerist society by the ruling class. Religion blinds people to the seriousness of the rapidly growing ecological crisis and the destructive effects of capitalism / enforced consumption ... a "leave it up to 'God" state of alienation, delusion, and denial. It cultivates a  powerlessness in society that benefits the ruling class who value profit more than the protection of humanity and the natural world ... as it has since the marriage of the simultaneously ascending merchant class and the institution of Christianity in the 12th - 13th century. 

 

 

Edited by No Solid Ground

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Mr Walker
6 minutes ago, No Solid Ground said:

 It remains dominant today because it is a perfect match for the perpetuation of a radical capitalist / consumerist society by the ruling class. Religion blinds people to the seriousness of the rapidly growing ecological crisis and the destructive effects of capitalism / enforced consumption ... a "leave it up to 'God" state of alienation, delusion, and denial. It cultivates a  powerlessness in society that benefits the ruling class who value profit more than the protection of humanity and the natural world ... as it has since the marriage of the ascending merchant class and the ascending institution of Christianity in the 12th - 13th century. 

 

 

It is true that there is a fit  between christianity and capitalism  Much more of a fit than, for example, any of the religions of early peoples based on their connection to, and dependence on, the forces of nature.

  Is that the nature of christianity, however, or how christianity adapted to growing technology, capitalism and materialism in the west?

 BUT if you take biblical christianity, and go to the bible, you find this fit does not exist. it is an evolved partnership of church and state /capitalism  

Biblically the message is actually one of spiritual wisdom being more important than material things and that only spiritual wisdom can bring heaven to earth

Ps capitalism and a market economy are good things and have brought great benefits to humanity They are both more environmentally friendly and sustainable than for example stalins socialist centrally planned economy.   However, as in the genesis allegory, the y come at a cost if wisdom is lost.

Aa balance is needed so that we have all thatt we need but learn that we cant have all that we desire in material terms.

We can have excellent technologies medical benefits and comfort/ease of living so that no one needs to go hungry, in pain, or   without purpose,   yet still live sustainably.

One of the biggest changes will come as our  global population halves,  or so, during the next 150 years. Not only is population growth unsustainable, our current polation can not be sustained with equity and justice, without using too many resources.

   Do you really believe in ruling classes in the modern era  I am freer now than any human being at anytime in history I have no ruler and cant see any ruling class.

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back to earth
14 hours ago, Mr Walker said:

 What you failed to point out was th this is not a book written by  the university or authorised by the university but simply one of many books  published by the university publishing house  You were arguing this gave it academic kudos or validation anf thus ta the theory is somehow endorsed by the university or the  academics of the university. Neither is true.  

The quote me where I actually said these things Walker !    I said this observation IS academic  and NOT just a creation of that one author, or me or NSG !  

14 hours ago, Mr Walker said:

I never denied the theory existed. I said, correctly that it is non mainstream  and is quite difficult even to find, in general google searches until you already know something about it

of course,     we already  did know something about   ... from academia and studying comparative religion ... which you claimed to have ... yet you wholly ignorant of it .... curious that ? 

I found that quote from a general google search, took less than a minute .   Dont you know how to find things quickly on google ? 

14 hours ago, Mr Walker said:

  It simply defies all that is known about religion and worship and attempts to redefine the very terms to justify its hypothesis

Nope !   It just simply  'defies'  all YOU  know about it     :D  

Which is rather surprising as . like I said before. all this has been thrashed out before and I posted the academic proof before ... so you  SHOULD  have known about it ... if you just didnt  'erase' anything that you didnt agree with.  

14 hours ago, Mr Walker said:

This is why apologists for it have to explain how confronting and controversial it is and how people find i hard to accept because it flies in the face of all previous academic understanding  Really ? No it is simply  not accepted by almost ALL academia. because it doesn't fit the established knowledge and understandings about the nature of religious belief and religions and worship  It doesn't match the nature of belief in primitive people of today and it doesn't match the writings of the sumerians, babylonians, egyptians, chinese  or ANY early recorded writings about human belief religion and worship.

Nope  . you are totally missing the points that were explained to you about this . 

14 hours ago, Mr Walker said:

7 sources compared with 7 million or more academic  pieces on ealry religions belief and worship  

Read just ONE on the popul vuh  a maya texts describing pre european mayan religion and worship.

You missing the main point of the observation ... I won't bother explaining it all over again as you 'miss that' too ... continually . 

14 hours ago, Mr Walker said:

Then try and tell me that before christianity and the middle ages humans had no religions, and did not worship  

Nope .  Thats turning things to your simplistic definitions, and I won't buy into that . Its already explained by my definitions . over and over again to you .

Where did I ever say 'they did not worship '   ... you are hopeless at running an argument ... especially when you resort to these thin and transparent tactics .

When shall we get to the crux of the present  issue Walker ?  Can you even remember what it was ... my challenge ?  or are you avoiding that and carrying on with all this again as a smoke screen ? 

14 hours ago, Mr Walker said:

 It would be hilarious if some people didnt get sucked in by such rubbish, 

yes, thats right ... now you bring in your hilarity  and call it rubbish while failing to meet my challenge that it was originally academic observations ! 

14 hours ago, Mr Walker said:

 

and use it to justify a belief that somehow christianity was a backward step in the evolution of human belief systems,  rather than just another forward step along the evolutionary path of human belief, faith, religiosity, and worship. 

http://www.ancient.eu/Maya_Religion/

Nope  .. again ... you just totally made that up and inserted it into this ... for whatever reason .

The issue is totally different and about how our modern perceptions and distinctions and . most importantly  separations   have been projected backwards in time to before they existed and used to  declare how ancient people lived their way of life . 

I am not surprised you cant follow this  observation as you have warped everything ... yet again ... to something you feel you can argue against and win .   

THis was never about what you are now trying to claim !   Wherever or wherever in all of this was it claimed that Christianity was a backward step in the evolution of the human belief system  ??? !!  :wacko:  

 

Now, are you going to man up and meet my challenge ... or can we just expect more of your silly dancing around the issue ?

LIke I said ... I am happy to show who  the scholars are that made this observation  .. are you still claiming it is non academic and just my and the one author I cited as the source of this concept ? 

And can you answer the question clearly for once without hopping on your segway   ....  actually, first ;

 Can you actually comprehend the question ? 

 

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Dhurfjooydig
41 minutes ago, Mr Walker said:

Do you really believe in ruling classes in the modern era  I am freer now than any human being at anytime in history I have no ruler and cant see any ruling class.

More precisely, a transnational capitalist class:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Transnational_capitalist_class

... of which religion is an integral though covert player.

I hate to break it to you, but the relative degree of your 'freedom' has been factored into an acceptable level of allowed 'freedom' by the ruling class, and your internal narrative of 'freedom' was scripted and fed to you. Your life has been reduced to moving in sync with carefully designed ideological and marketing strategies that have been taught you, from birth to old age ... how to look, act, think, feel, believe, and—most important—consume.

Our hidden, greedy masters refer to you as a “consumption unit” and have guided you through “consumer life cycles” from infancy through your senior years. Within each consumer cycle, a limited number of consumer lifestyle options with short shelf lives are carefully constructed for maximum profit by those who own these commerce infrastructures. What you buy today will be obsolete or unfashionable tomorrow, as they were planned to be. ­­­The same strategy is used by purveyors of ideas and shapers of opinion and belief. Superficial, polarized debate is provoked and discreetly encouraged in society within the narrow parameters of provided information templates, ready-to-wear narratives, and institutionalized beliefs, giving you the impression that you're knowledgeable and freely participating. In actuality, you're only choosing a prepackaged option within a micromanaged script that benefits those who write and own the script. Those who cannot or will not fit themselves into these well-strategized structures and seductive templates are disadvantaged, marginalized, and often scapegoated and punished.

This isn’t freedom … it’s a factory, and you're both the product and the consumer. Nope ... you're not free, but you've been culturally conditioned to think you are freer than any human being has ever been in all of history. :) 

Edited by No Solid Ground
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Frank Merton
6 minutes ago, No Solid Ground said:

More precisely, a transnational capitalist class:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Transnational_capitalist_class

... of which religion is an integral though covert player.

I hate to break it to you, but the relative degree of your 'freedom' has been factored into an acceptable level of allowed 'freedom' by the ruling class, and your internal narrative of 'freedom' was scripted and fed to you. Your life has been reduced to moving in sync with carefully designed ideological and marketing strategies that have been taught you, from birth to old age ... how to look, act, think, feel, believe, and—most important—consume.

Our hidden, greedy masters refer to you as a “consumption unit” and have guided you through “consumer life cycles” from infancy through your senior years. Within each consumer cycle, a limited number of consumer lifestyle options with short shelf lives are carefully constructed for maximum profit by those who own these commerce infrastructures. What you buy today will be obsolete or unfashionable tomorrow, as they were planned to be. ­­­The same strategy is used by purveyors of ideas and shapers of opinion and belief. Superficial, polarized debate is provoked and discreetly encouraged in society within the narrow parameters of provided information templates, ready-to-wear narratives, and institutionalized beliefs, giving you the impression that you're knowledgeable and freely participating. In actuality, you're only choosing a prepackaged option within a micromanaged script that benefits those who write and own the script. Those who cannot or will not fit themselves into these well-strategized structures and seductive templates are disadvantaged, marginalized, and often scapegoated and punished.

This isn’t freedom … it’s a factory, and you're both the product and the consumer. Nope ... you're not free, but you've been culturally conditioned to think you are freer than any human being has ever been in all of history. :) 

I think you describe the state of things fairly accurately; what you miss is that we all are prospering, probably because of just what you describe.  The myths of modern society do blind us to the greed and corruption of the rulers, but their greed and corruption is to an extent a lubricant that keeps things from being locked in place by lawyers and moralists.

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back to earth

Walker, like me is your 'average Aussie bloke '    .... which means 'we are on top of the pile ' . Thats easy to NOT see . if you refuse to look down .     I looked down and saw what supports me up here . 

At how we got what we did due to the destruction of the original inhabitants and our environment . 

'Australia rides on the sheep's back  '  they used to say .     Look what that  did to the environment here !    Now its mining ... look what that has done to the environment here and the mines we run OS ( like OK Teddie In PNG   and that disaster in Sth America ! )

There is the funding for or free health care and other top of the pile benefits ! 

And 'freedom '    ?  In my youth I was free to get a cheap motorcycle , cheap fuel , cheap or free camping and caravan accommodation and rent , and a job in any place you would care to travel to ... and only need to work a few months of the year to pay for it all.

Now, compare that to the 'freedom'  of today's youth here  .....   they ca hardly believe 'stories' like that anymore . 

let's see when soon Walker's state runs out of electricity ... and no gas as we sold all our gas to OS at a cheaper rate then we could ever buy it for ! 

But Walker is a  blind patriot and nationalist ... so he won't even admit to any of this .   ;) 

N

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Dhurfjooydig
2 minutes ago, Frank Merton said:

I think you describe the state of things fairly accurately; what you miss is that we all are prospering, probably because of just what you describe.  The myths of modern society do blind us to the greed and corruption of the rulers, but their greed and corruption is to an extent a lubricant that keeps things from being locked in place by lawyers and moralists.

Somewhere around half the world's population — over three billion people — live on less than $2.50 a day. At least 80% of humanity lives on less than $10 a day. Who exactly is the "we" you referenced? :)

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back to earth
8 minutes ago, Frank Merton said:

I think you describe the state of things fairly accurately; what you miss is that we all are prospering, probably because of just what you describe.  The myths of modern society do blind us to the greed and corruption of the rulers, but their greed and corruption is to an extent a lubricant that keeps things from being locked in place by lawyers and moralists.

Depends who one sees as  'we'   and   'all'    

 

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Frank Merton
Just now, back to earth said:

Depends who one sees as  'we'   and   'all'    

 

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Now you are engaging in cheap propaganda.

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